Many of the common traditions, eateries, and experiences that were seemingly essential to Bruin life as recent as five years ago are no more. What follows is a list of things that have been banned, no longer exist, or just aren’t the same…
1. You’ve been to an epic party at 638.
Project X was loosely based on a party held at 638 Landfair. I’m sure of it.
2. You used the rape trail as a shortcut.
Despite what the name might imply, the rape trail used to be the quickest, most traveled route to certain Westwood apartments. In an effort to rebrand the area, it was officially given the name Saxon Steps in 2008. But after a woman was sexually assaulted there in 2012, the university got rid of the steps all together. It’s not enclosed by a fence and covered with trees.
3. Turning 21 meant you could finally go to Margarita Mondays legally.
Monday nights in Westwood used to unofficially be known as Margarita Mondays because of the happy hour special at Westwood Acapulco. After 33 years of doing business in the ‘Wood, the Mexican cantina served its last $2 margarita in 2012. Perhaps they got tired of people passing off their IDs to their underage friends?
4. Turning 21 meant you could finally partake in drunken karaoke at Brew Co.
After Margarita Monday was over the next spot on the itinerary was usually Brew Co. for a little drunken karaoke. Though Margarita Mondays is no more, you can still catch a little Brew Co. magic if you hurry before the end of the summer when it’s slated to be replaced by *drum roll please* …a Boiling Crab.
5. Turning 21 meant you could finally go to Maloney’s legally.
OK so Brew Co. is crowded or you’re over it. Next stop? Maloney’s! Or *ahem* O’Hara’s as it’s now called. Thankfully many Bruins still call this spot Maloney’s though it’s not entirely clear if they know where the “nickname” came from.
6. You’ve drunkenly binged on Buck Fifty’s.
It’s 1:55 a.m. and Maloney’s just started playing Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing.” If this was the good old days, the next stop would be Buck Fifty’s for cheap, late night eats. But it’s 2013 and now you’d be leaving O’Hara’s and heading to Fat Sal’s. *Womp*
7. You’ve purchased tacos from Taco Bell on Bruin Walk.
Not Ackerman… Bruin Walk. Right where those picnic tables are on the east side SAC… yeah there! Believe it. Nothing says the good old days like easily accessible fast food.
8. You’ve honored 4/20 by sparking up on the lawn in front of Kerckhoff.
Considering that UCLA is now a tobacco-free campus, it’s highly unlikely that the 4/20 tradition of sparking up on Kerckhoff is still a thing.
9. You’ve scammed Parking Services for Temporary Day passes.
If you had an official parking pass you used to be able to tell the attendant that it was at home, show your student ID and score a temporary pass to give to a friend in need. Although it’s virtually impossible to leave a parking pass at home since there’s never really a good enough reason for ever taking it out of the car, UCLA Parking Services didn’t pick up on this scam until recent years. The current cost of an all day pass? $12!
10. You’ve paid $5 for an all day parking pass on campus
No surprises here. Parking goes up every year it seems. That’s just the Bruin Way.
11. You’ve directed someone unfamiliar with the campus to “just park in Lot 6.”
“Come all the way down Westwood until it ends…” It’s one of the easiest lots for visitors to find or at least it was. This summer Lot 6 and the Ackerman Turnaround were closed down officially until 2016 to make way for… wait for it… a hotel!
12. You feel as though you shouldn’t have to pay any more than 25 cents for a cookie or $1 for an ice cream cookie sandwich from Diddy Riese.
Because that’s what they cost right? Wrong. Cookies went from 25 cents to 35 cents in 2002 and ice cream sandwiches went up to $1.25 in 2006. Still dirt cheap, but it’s just the principle.
13. Black Sunday was your favorite day of the school year.
Because when else did Westwood turn into a huge block party along frat row? Somewhere around 2002 when things got a little too rowdy and the administration put a lid on Black Sunday, but not without a decent alternative: Black Sunday was replaced by a welcome back concert now known as Bruin Bash. Meh, fair trade.
14. When you hear “Puzzles,” your stomach growls.
All I want for my birthday is a breakfast burrito from Puzzles. It’s called Cafe 1919 now and has a completely different menu. Take a look at the original for nostalgia’s sake.
15. When you hear “Crossroads,” your stomach growls…
16. You’ve bowled in Ackerman.
Because apparently before the arcade became every middle-schooler-on-a-field-trip’s dream, students in Ackerman had to entertain themselves somehow.
17. You remember when the USC/UCLA rivalry was actually a rivalry.
Now see, I knew that comment wasn’t going to go over well but it’s true. You didn’t go to UCLA in the good old days unless you witnessed the Bruins best the Trojans. Although the victory bell is currently safe and sound in Westwood at the moment, when it arrived on campus in 2012 many students had no clue what it was. Bruins who went to UCLA between 1991 and 1998 know what I’m talking about though.
18. You’ve dropped someone off at Sproul Turnaround.
Yeah that’s gone too… Although a little birdie told me it may reopen; they closed it off to make room for more residence halls.
19. You’ve eaten at Caruso’s in Sproul.
UCLA does not play when it comes to their eateries.
20. You remember the L.A. Times Festival of Books being on campus
If it’s springtime and the white tents in Dickson Plaza are up, back in the good old days this meant that the L.A. Times Festival of Books was coming up. Nowadays it just means they’re probably doing auditions for American Idol or something because the L.A. Times Festival of Books has packed up and moved to that other school across town.
21. You remember Undie Run… the original Undie Run…
Yes, Undie Run still happens, but it’s grown exponentially since those first 13 guys ran up and down Glenrock at the stroke of midnight on the Wednesday night of finals week in the spring of 2002.
By 2006, it was attended by thousands of people running half naked down Landfair before becoming a cross-campus event. It’s outlawed now, but the ban hasn’t stopped students (and many leery creeps from the surrounding the community) from keeping the tradition alive — for better or worse.
22. You participated in Midnight Yell… the real Midnight Yell…
Some may call it a disruption or distraction, but true Bruins call it “collective de-stressing.” Back in the day during finals week, students would line the streets, climb onto rooftops, open their windows… and, when the clock struck midnight, everyone would yell, blast music, light fireworks, blow whistles, use air horns, and just try to make as much noise as possible. Now that kind of behavior can get you a $25 fine to your bar account or a visit from the police.
23. You got your letters at Greek Express.
If you were in a sorority or fraternity, you likely ventured into Westwood to get all of your Greek gear at Greek Express. Their hours were more than a little shady but it was way easier than doing what Greeks do now…. venture over into Trojan territory to get their goods from Robin at Greek Escape near SC. Ugh.
24. You’ve met John Wooden.
It’ll be a sad day in Westwood when young Bruins no longer know who the campus gym is named after. Although we’re far from that, Bruins today aren’t lucky enough to have met the legendary head basketball coach while he still held the position or in his numerous on-campus appearances after he retired. His memory lives on in a statue outside of the newly renovated Pauley Pavilion though.
25. You’ve done the Eight Clap because that old alumni cheerleader guy told you to.
“Every man, woman and child…” loosely translates to “get ready for some Eight-Clapping” in Bruin Speak. You know this because Geoffrey Strand’s been yelling this through a megaphone as prep for the Eight Clap since pretty much forever. He’s actually still there… I just wanted to shout him out because I heard they don’t pay him. He actually buys season tickets every year. Now that’s some real Bruin Spirit!
OK so clearly going to UCLA in “the good old days” is relative. Add your memories, favorite places, and traditions in the comment section. Spent afternoons in The Coop? Lived in Hershey Hall? Partied at Madison’s? Tell us all about it!
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